In this present era, where people are getting more concerned about depression and other situations regarding mental health and getting more attentive about self-care, it is highly possible that you have heard about light therapy, if not have used it already. Light therapy is a revolutionary method that has manifold benefits. If you are suffering from mental health problems such as depression, seasonal affective disorder, etc., or different skin problems, light therapy can be a great solution to those problems. And going through light therapy is a straightforward process that can be easily applied at home.
What is Light Therapy?
Bright light therapy has brought wonders in the world of therapies, and all of the potentials of light therapy are yet to be discovered. For going through light therapy, you basically just have to expose yourself to a source of bright light, which is called a lightbox. Lightboxes radiate a very strong light, and the light can be of different colors such as red, blue, green, etc. Different colored lights fulfill different purposes. After getting regularly exposed to the strong light emitted by lightboxes for a certain time, you will be able to feel the differences.
The main purpose of lightboxes is to mimic the sunlight. The way we absorb sunlight, we need to absorb the light emitted by lightboxes in the same way so that we can get the full benefits of sunlight. Different spectrums of light are used in the lightboxes. The spectrum ranges from just above the UV light spectrum to the Infrared light spectrum. So, the whole spectrum of visible lights is part of light therapy.
Why You Should Take Light Therapy?
Light therapy helps us with many things. Light therapy has especially been popular for treating the SAD or seasonal affective disorder. Seasonal affective disorder can occur during winter and late fall, and when you suffer from it, you will face different problems such as tiredness, sadness, being always sleepy, finding no motivation or energy to work, etc. Taking light therapy regularly can help you with these syndromes.
Light radiated by lightboxes can penetrate your skin at many different depths and help generate various reactions in your skin. Many hormonal reactions are generated by bright light therapy, which helps to grow the serotonin level and reduce the level of melatonin and some other hormones that have a hand in causing depression and other problems like SAD. You can also use light therapy to get rid of acne, skin wrinkles, dry skins, etc. Light therapies are getting used for almost every kind of skin problem these days. And not to mention, light therapy can help you tremendously to uplift your mood and energy if you regularly go through this therapy for quite some time and get rid of sadness and depressing thoughts.
How to Apply Light Therapy at Home
Taking light therapy is an easy process, and you can go through it all by yourself at your own home. You won’t even need any help from someone. From the discussion so far, you have pretty much already figured how light therapy works and how you need to take it. You just need to get yourself exposed to the radiated light of the lightbox and absorb the light for a certain amount of time. But you will need to follow some rules that will help you to go through the process properly and help you get the desired result. As without maintaining proper rules, you might not get the expected results after all. The tips you can follow while taking light therapy at your home are-
Using a Lightbox with the Power of 10,000 Lux
You have to keep in mind that the purpose of the lightbox is to mimic sunlight, which has a lot of strength in its radiation. So, you can’t just use normal lamps to take this therapy, as they don’t have the strength or the spectrum of sunlight. You need to use the lightboxes that are specifically manufactured for this task, and the strength of light emitted by the lightbox has to be 10,000 lux or around that number, which is 20 times stronger than normal lamps. If you use a lightbox that has a bit less strength, then you’ll need to take the therapy for a longer period daily.
Positioning the Lightbox Properly
You’ll need to be careful while you are positioning the lightbox to take the therapy. The perfect thing to do is to place the lightbox over your eye level. You can’t place it lower than the level of your eyes, at best you can keep the box at your eye level. If you don’t place the box properly, you won’t be able to have expected results.
Also, you need to maintain the proper distance from the lightbox. Like, you’ll have to sit 2 feet away from the light source if the power is 10,000 lux. If the power is less, you’ll have to sit closer. And don’t let the light directly hit your eyes, so you’ll need to sit at an angle of 45° with the lightbox to keep the light from directly hitting your eyes.
Taking the Proper Amount of Time for Therapy
Morning is the best time to use light therapy, and you can take it every morning for 20 to 30 minutes. It will help to lift your energy and mood. However, if things don’t change after some days, you can increase the time. You can take your breakfast or use your phone or laptop during the time while you’re sitting in front of the light.
Taking the Therapy Consistently
You’ll need to use the therapy consistently for a certain period or until the time you get your expected result.
Not Using Light Therapy While on Photosensitive Medications
There are some antibiotics or other medicines that are photosensitive, and if you are using them, you should not use the lightbox as the medicines can make your skin light sensitive. Then the light therapy can cause problems such as rashes or sunburns on your skin.
Light Therapy is a really effective method to treat numerous skin and mental health situations, and it is really easy to go through too. You can easily take the therapy by following the aforementioned rules at your own home, and without any expert help.